|Taieri Gorge sky|
My journey began with a day-long bus ride from Nelson to Dunedin. Parts were really beautiful, especially the Lewis Pass.
I loved Dunedin. Highlights: On the Taieri Gorge Train, I enjoyed standing outside the cars and watching the scenery flash by (though my fingers were numb by the end). The Elm wildlife tour was a fantastic opportunity to see the Otago Peninsula and its animal residents. The University of Otago is the oldest Uni in New Zealand.
|sheep and penguins sharing a hillside|
|fall in Arrowtown|
|Mirror Lakes in Fiordland National Park|
|mountains along the sound|
|adult Tuatara- they are AWESOME|
Next I headed to Franz Josef, a tiny town near the Franz Josef glacier. Basically what you do in Franz is climb the glacier; there's not much else. But the glacier was FANTASTIC. I did a full-day tour with the glacier guides, and it was awesome. I wore crampons for the first time, and surprisingly did not injure myself. The ice was so beautiful, and as a geological formation I find it quite fascinating.
Conveniently, my friend Holly was staying with some friends outside of Greymouth for the weekend, so I met her there and got to hang out on a huge farm with some cool Kiwis. The next day I rode back to Nelson with Holly and her boyfriend Scottie, and now here I am!
Today I had a wonderful day. I babysat Leo for a bit (he's now blowing kisses!), walked into town and learned how to cook risotto from Emma and Tim. Tomorrow I am headed to Arapawa Island with the Marshalls (some friends of Laurie's - Holly is their daughter). Then on to the North Island for the remainder of my trip!
|NZ flax, Otago Peninsula|
*A Smattering of Kiwi Slang:
- "sweet as"- "I confirm that what you are proposing is good by me" (from a Global Culture t-shirt). Actually, this unfinished simile is common. Things can be "cheap as," "kiwi as," "dirty as" etc.
- "knackered"- tired out
- "tucker"- food
- "cuppa"- a cup of tea (or coffee)
- "tea"- could be tea that you drink, or could refer to dinner (or occasionally to other meals). For instance, someone could say, "Do you want to come over for tea? We could do a bbq!"
- "jandals"- flip-flops
- "lollies"- candy or something sweet
- "OE"- Overseas Experience, often taken the year after college (American equivalent-high school)
- "Uni"- university
- "Pommie"- a British person, from Prisoner Of Mother England
- "Sunnies"- sunglasses
- "eh"- similar to the Canadian eh. Except I think Kiwis say it more than Canadians.